Luxury footwear brand VICSON celebrates its American debut with a Miami 70s-inspired collection.
Founder Victoria Cirigliano discusses being a trailblazer for social media retail, navigating a launch during COVID-19, and what’s next for the Argentinian brand.
The Knockturnal: What inspired you to found VICSON?
Victoria Cirigliano: VICSON started as an idea back in 2012 when I was 20 years old in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I was completing my degree in Public Relations and I couldn’t envision myself working in an office everyday, or for someone else. I never saw myself as a designer, but in this journey of finding my path, social media was just starting to become a big thing, and I saw an opportunity. I decided to start a shoe brand and sell it through Facebook. What started out as a hobby quickly became my passion, and I can’t imagine my life any other way.
The Knockturnal: Congratulations on recently launching in the U.S.! What was breaking into the American market like?
Victoria Cirigliano: It was overwhelming to say the least. It took a lot of work especially on my self-confidence to have the courage to finally take the plunge and go for it. I had to believe we could make it as a brand in such a competitive market. But the response was so good, it made all the self-doubt, work and sacrifices so worth it. We are only getting started but it’s been super rewarding so far.
The Knockturnal: Beginning with Facebook in 2012, how has social media been ingrained in VICSON? What was the foresight like to know how important social media would be for fashion marketing and customer acquisition?
Victoria Cirigliano: I would say social media is the core of VICSON. It’s how we started and how we gain most of our customers since we haven’t really expand into wholesale and we only sell online. It’s the main window we have, so we work really hard on creating great content and trying to connect with our followers past our products. Our new challenge right now is to build our U.S. community on social. Instagram isn’t what it was a few years ago. It’s harder now to gain followers and increase engagement so it’s been an interesting journey, but we are growing day by day by being consistent and working with amazing influencers.
The Knockturnal: How does your approach to social media now differ during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially with this launch?
Victoria Cirigliano: It was really tough at first with so much uncertainty. It took me a few weeks to be sure about what the right message was. I didn’t want to overwhelm our community with information or things they should be doing but still wanted to keep being a light distraction so we had to find a balance. Regarding, our launches we were set to launch our Spring/Summer drop in March but decided to postpone it since our campaign was all about being outdoors and having fun, and it just seemed tone deaf to do it at the moment.
When we decided we were ready we had some hardships regarding shipping so we had to postpone it even more, and ended up launching last month. But the response has been great so we are happy with the outcome. Of course being a small business, COVID-19 has been a tough one.
The Knockturnal: Where do you typically draw inspiration from, in general?
Victoria Cirigliano: I’m always inspired by people and how they style themselves. But my biggest source of inspiration is thinking about my needs and what would I want to buy. That’s why I don’t follow trends, I follow my gut. I design towards functionality besides style. I’m always aiming to create statement pieces to simplify the process of getting dressed. You could have the most plain, classic outfit but if you add statement boots you don’t need anything else. I also love designing classics but always with a twist for VICSON’s signature style.
The Knockturnal: Your latest collection is inspired by 1970s and 1980s Miami style. What about that aesthetic spoke to you?
Victoria Cirigliano: I love the city of Miami. I believe it’s constantly evolving, refining itself and it’s where the brand is based now. So I wanted to pay an homage to it, and the colors and the fun people. Those decades specifically really resonated with me, and I think that’s reflected in the collection.
The Knockturnal: What do you love about fashion?
Victoria Cirigliano: I love how it can help you reinvent yourself and transform you into what you what you want to become or how you want to be perceived. I love the universe of fashion, the magic, the fun, how it takes you into this fantasy world and allows you to escape into a different reality. I absolutely love how the perfect piece can boost your mood and give you the confidence to take on anything.
The Knockturnal: VICSON also recently expanded into bridal footwear, jackets, and accessories. What led to that decision?
Victoria Cirigliano: Most of our styles are more on the casual side so adding bridal was a way to add a more dressy option. Also it was born by the need of wanting to be there for my customer every step of the way. I get so excited when we get bridal orders; it’s a huge compliment and still mind-blowing to me every time someone chooses us for such a special day, I think (and hope) I’ll never get over that feeling. Our jackets are also all leather and handmade so it was a way to slowly get into apparel without losing our essence. As for expanding into accessories, I want my customer to be able to create full looks with us and also have a more diverse price point.
The Knockturnal: Where do you see VICSON in five years?
Victoria Cirigliano: I see VICSON positioned as a go-to contemporary brand for anyone that wants to be comfortable without sacrificing style. I would like to have expanded even more into a wider range of accessories and also apparel still specializing in statement yet versatile and timeless pieces. I see VICSON being distributed nationwide and overseas, and hopefully with a community that feels like it can rely on us. We’ll keep working hard everyday till we get there!
For more information, visit https://shopvicson.com.